Sir Hereward Grantley is angry, as usual. A bad tempered man with little to commend him, he is determined that his niece, the orphaned Diona, will understand the great favour he has done by offering her a home. Never missing an opportunity to mention Diona?s penniless status and dependency, her uncle is an arrogant bully. Diona, aghast at being thrust into a world of unkindness and bullish behaviour after the love in her parents' home, mourns their loss and clings to the last thing that her popular, horse-loving papa gave her, her beloved Dalmatian, Sirius.Sir Grantley's sly son Simon is attracted to her and makes her life miserable. Diona flees and find refuge with the handsome Marquis of Irchester. A confirmed bachelor and friend of the Prince of Wales, the marquis has become used to a life of pleasure amongst the Beau Monde following the privations of the war.